Farmington school board chaos: Superintendent, 2 board members resign

Superintendent Robert Herrera resigns during emotional board meeting

School board chaos at Farmington Public Schools leads to superintendent's resignation

FARMINGTON, Mich. – As the chaos surrounding the Farmington school board continues, the superintendent and two board members resigned during an explosive, emotional meeting.

“This is painful, very painful,” school board President Pamela Green said. “I have the utmost respect for Dr. Herrera.”

Farmington Public Schools Superintendent Robert Herrera, who was hired just last year, resigned Monday night during an explosive, emotional board meeting.

“I think it is a loss for the district,” Green said. “He is the right man for the job.”

Board members told Local 4 the issue is ugly.

Internal documents obtained by the Local 4 Defenders show that board member Angie Smith allegedly worked to create an intimidating and offensive work environment for the superintendent, making comments and social media posts accusing Herrera of trying to rid the district of any African American staff members.

Smith allegedly said Herrera “in a sense had his knee on the neck of an African American coworker.”

The board called Smith’s claims unfounded, but accepted Herrera’s resignation to avoid being sued by him.

The issue was so upsetting to Green and board Vice President Terry Johnson that they resigned.

“The adult behavior at the board has been horrible, and as a result, the children are suffering,” Johnson said.

You can watch Shawn Ley’s full story in the video posted above.

Superintendent, board members allege harassment, ‘dysfunctional behavior’

The superintendent of Farmington Public Schools as well as two members of the district’s Board of Education cited allegations of harassment and “dysfunctional behavior.”

Herrera filed a complaint against Smith for harassment. The resignation agreement makes Herrera’s complaint moot and will no longer be pursued.

“While this is not how or the time that I wanted to leave the district, I felt it was necessary to do what was in the best interest of our entire school community,” Herrera said. “Farmington Public Schools will continue to serve the students and families well in our community; the District has a strong leadership team that will continue to move the District forward.”

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About the Authors:

Local 4 Defender Shawn Ley is an Emmy award-winning journalist who has been with Local 4 News for more than a decade.

Derick is the Lead Digital Editor for ClickOnDetroit and has been with Local 4 News since April 2013. Derick specializes in breaking news, crime and local sports.